What do you do on a rainy day when your kids are bored? Or how about a school vacation day when you need to add some structure to your routine? Or during a playdate when you want something fun and special for the kids to do? It is time to set up some paper crafts for kids! These ten crafts are fun, simple, and will look awesome when they're finished. Even the adults in your family will enjoy participating in these crafts. Plus, they're affordable and make use of supplies you already have around the house.
10 Fun Paper Crafts For Kids
1. Paper Glass
Paper crafts for kids can also be educational. This project is inspired by artist Dale Chihuly's colorful glass Macchia bowls. You can turn this into a mini art lesson by searching online for "Dale Chihuly Macchia bowls" to see how the real ones are made and to get ideas for designs. To make this fun, kid-friendly version, all you'll need is plain white coffee filters, scissors, non-permanent markers, a plastic cup or other bowl-shaped container that can be thrown away, and spray starch.
First, use the scissors to trim along the edge of the coffee filter. The idea is to make it look curvy and uneven, not perfectly round. Next, decorate the coffee filter with the markers. You can make shapes and lines, using whatever combination of colors you like. Now, turn the cup or other container upside-down and drape the coffee filter over it like a tablecloth.
Spray the entire coffee filter with the spray starch. You will see the colors start to bleed and blend. Be sure not to leave any dry spots. Let it dry completely. Be careful not to touch it until it is all the way dry.
Carefully remove the coffee filter from the container. The starch will have caused the coffee filter to keep the shape of the container, giving it a bowl shape. You now have your very own Macchia bowl!
2. Textured Tissue Paper Collage
For this project, you'll need a piece of cardboard. If you don't have any regular cardboard handy, it is fine to cut a piece from a cardboard food container such as a cereal box. You'll also need some different colors of paper streamers or tissue paper.
First, plan out your design. You might want to use a pencil to draw the outline of the design on the cardboard. Then, tear off pieces of the tissue paper or streamers. You can either crumple the pieces into balls or roll them around a pencil to make little circles.
Use the tacky glue to stick the crumpled or rolled pieces into the correct places on the cardboard. Now you have a beautiful, colorful, textured piece of artwork.
3. Classic Paper-Woven Placemats
Some paper crafts for kids are timeless. You may remember this craft from your primary school days. It is just as much fun now as it was then. You can make paper placemats for any holiday by choosing the colors that correspond with the holiday, or just use all your favorite colors for year-round dinner table decorations. All you'll need is construction paper, scissors, and a ruler.
Choose one sheet of construction paper to be the base of the placemat. Fold this sheet of paper in half. Starting at the folded edge, cut evenly spaced slots that do not reach the open end of the paper. You can use the ruler to draw some guiding lines to make sure your slots are all uniformly spaced.
Take the other sheets of construction paper and cut them into strips. All of the strips should be the same width. Again, you might want to use your ruler and a pencil to create guiding lines. Open the folded sheet of construction paper that you cut slots in.
Take each strip of construction paper and weave it through the slots. The strips should go down through the first slot, then up through the second, then down, then up, until it has snaked its way to the other side of the paper. If you start the first strip going down the first slot and up through the second, do the opposite with the next strip: up through the first slot and down the second.
You can either leave the strips of paper sticking out along the edges of the placemat like fringe, or fold them back and tape them for a crisper look. If you want to keep your placemat forever, you can put clear contact paper on either side of it. Now if it gets dirty, you can simply wipe it clean!
4. Paper Snake
This paper snake may take a while to make, but it is so cool, it will be worth it. You'll need a toilet paper tube, construction paper or scrapbook paper, scissors, paint, a stapler, and embellishments such as googly eyes and glitter.
The toilet paper tube is the head of the snake. Cut one end of it into a curvy shape to resemble a mouth. Paint the outside and inside of the toilet paper tube to look like a snake. Cut your construction paper or scrapbook paper into strips all the same size.
Choose two strips. Glue them end to end at a right angle so that they create an L-shape. Fold the bottom strip over the top strip, keeping the L-shape. Now fold the new bottom strip over the top strip, still keeping the L-shape. Repeat until you cannot do any more folding.
Now, glue another strip to the end of each of those first two strips, extending them so that you can continue folding. Repeat this process. You will begin to see your snake grow longer and longer. Continue the process until the snake is as long as you want it to be. Now glue the ends of the final two strips to the inside of the back of the toilet paper tube.
Squeeze the back of the toilet paper tube closed, and staple it. All that is left to do now is to decorate the snake's face! Use your imagination to make a snake that is as scary, friendly, or funny as you want it to be.
- Paper roll is 2-feet high by 8-feet long
- 6 assorted animal print designs, including snake, alligator, cheetah, zebra, tiger, and giraffe
- Ultra fade-resistant, acid-free paper for long lasting displays
5. Slotted Sculpture
Some paper crafts can turn into toys. This project is inspired by the abstract sculptures created by Alexander Calder. This craft doubles as a building toy that can be used over and over again. You'll need plain or colored posterboard, scissors, and things with which to decorate the posterboard with. Scrapbook paper, washi tape, or markers are some things you can use to decorate.
First, cut the posterboard into lots of smaller squares, about four to six-square inches in size. Decorate each of the squares in any way you want. Now, trim the edges to cut them into random and whimsical shapes. Cut two or three slots in various places along the edges of each shape. To make the slots, it works best to make two slits, about 3/4 inches deep, right next to each other. Then remove the tiny scrap from the middle.
You can now attach different shapes to each other by sliding them together at the slots. Make an abstract sculpture. When you're finished, you can either keep it forever or take it apart and make a new one!
6. Humming Paper Spinner
This is another one of those paper crafts for kids that becomes a toy. You'll need a circle cut out of cardboard, a 28-inch long piece of twine, white paper, markers, scissors, and some twine.
First, trace the cardboard onto the white paper twice, making two circles. Decorate the paper circles. Make them as colorful as possible. Cut them out, and glue one to each side of the cardboard circle. Poke two holes in the center of the cardboard circle.
Put one end of the twine through each hole. Tie the ends of the twine together. Twist the twine until it is wound tightly. Now, take one end of the twine in each hand, with the cardboard circle in the middle. Pull both ends outwards and then relax the twine. The cardboard circle should spin wildly, making a humming noise!
7. Crumpled Paper Art
Some paper crafts for kids can be tied to children's books. This one is inspired by the children's book Ish, by Peter H. Reynolds. It is a story about a boy who, discouraged when someone makes fun of his artwork, crumples up his papers and throws them away. His sister uncrumples them and shows him how beautiful they really are. Check it out and read it with your kids and then make this piece of art. All you'll need for this simple paper craft for kids is white construction paper, watercolor paints, and paintbrushes.
First, take your piece of construction paper and crumple it into a ball. Choose one color of paint. Use it to paint the entire outside of your ball. Gently uncrumple the ball. Now crumple it up again! Choose another color, and paint the outside of the ball. It is okay for colors to overlap. Uncrumple the ball.
You can either keep your work of art the way it is now or crumple it up one more time and add another color. Finally, let it dry, and enjoy your unique work of art!
8. 3D Animal Faces
Paper crafts for kids don't have to be complicated! This open-ended craft project starts with a circle cut out of cardstock. You'll also need more cardstock, scissors, glue dots, glue, and other craft supplies such as markers or google eyes.
First, cut a "pie slice" out of the cardstock circle. Now, form a cone with the circle, securing it with glue dots. Here is your cone head! The rest is up to you. You can cut ears and other features out of the other piece of cardstock and use other art supplies to create your animal.
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9. Paper Fish Craft
Make several of these fish paper crafts for kids to turn your house into an aquarium! You'll need a paper plate, construction paper or scrapbook paper, glue, scissors, paint, googly eyes, and glitter.
First, paint one entire side of a paper plate. Let it dry. Then cut a triangle shape from the right side of the plate. It should resemble a fish mouth. Glue that same triangle shape to the left side of the plate, with the pointy side in. It should resemble a fishtail.
Cut a bunch of one-inch circles from the colored paper. Fold each of these and glue them onto your fish to create scales. You might want to decorate them with glitter before you glue them on. Cut out two fins from colored paper and glue them to the top and bottom of the fish. Add a googly eye to complete your fish!
Some paper crafts for kids look really hard to do but are actually rather simple. This agamograph craft will impress everyone who sees it. It helps to print out the template and instructions from the website listed below. You'll also need crayons or markers, scissors, and glue.
The easiest way to make this project is to start by drawing and coloring two separate pictures from the picture template page found on the website. You'll then cut along the lines to cut your two pictures into strips. Now, you'll glue the strips from the first picture onto the "a" sections of the agamograph template, and glue the strips from the second picture onto the "b" sections. It is important to glue them on in the right order, not randomly.
Then, you'll fold the whole thing accordion-style along the lines. Now, when you look at the agamograph from one angle, you'll see your first picture. When you look at it from the other angle, you'll see the second picture. Once you've gotten the hang of this, you won't even need the template to make your own agamographs!
Supplies You'll Need
These paper crafts for kids all have supplies listed, but you can also use additional supplies to add embellishments and details. Here are some examples of what you might want to use:
Tips and Tricks
Paper crafts for kids are fun for the whole family. Doing a paper craft together can turn any day into a special family day. We hope you have lots of fun making all of these crafts with the kids in your life.